Terry injury a 'big blow' for England, rues Lampard

With the centre-back ruled out of Tuesday's tie with Ukraine, his Chelsea team-mate admits that his absence is a concern but is confident in the squad's strength
England midfielder Frank Lampard concedes that John Terry's absence from Tuesday's clash with Ukraine due to injury is a "big blow" for the national side.

The Chelsea centre-back limped out of the Three Lions' opening World Cup 2014 qualifiying clash on Friday against Moldova with ankle trouble and has now returned to the Premier League club for treatment.

Lampard acknowledged that England would miss the former captain but backed the likes of Phil Jagielka and Gary Cahill to come into the team seamlessly.

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"It's a big blow, he's a top player and has experience of these kind of qualifying games," the midfielder told reporters. "I think we are blessed with fantastic backup and whoever comes in will be an experienced, top player.

"As is always the case when you lose a player, you need the squad to step up and do it and I'm sure we've got that."

Manchester City midfielder James Milner echoed Lampard's thoughts, insisting that England had the squad depth needed to cope with the loss of the 31-year-old.

"Obviously JT is a top player and will be tough to replace, but we've got a number of top candidates who can step right in, so it shouldn't be too much of a problem," he opined.

"There's Jagielka and Cahill and a number of other ways the manager could go, so it's good for someone else to step in and have a chance and it's not going to weaken the team in any way."

Milner expects a more difficult test ahead against Ukraine, who England beat 1-0 at Euro 2012, having scored his first international goal in the 5-0 thrashing of Moldova.

"It'll be slightly different [from Euro 2012], but the majority of the squads will be pretty similar and this time it's on our home turf so we need to make sure that we put in a good performance," he continued.

"They showed in the summer that they're no pushovers. They're a strong side with a number of good players that are well organised, work very hard and press you for 90 minutes.

"If we can perform like we did the other night and come out of the traps quickly, then hopefully we can get an early goal, settle down and play some good football."

"Games against teams like Ukraine are potentially tricky as they're teams that people expect us to beat"

- Frank Lampard

Lampard, meanwhile, admitted that there is pressure on England to deliver at Wembley and get points under their belt early on in their quest to qualify for World Cup 2014.

"They're big games, there's a lot of pressure on them," the midfielder, who scored twice on Friday, continued. "You need to get points, particularly early on in groups. Games against teams like Ukraine are potentially tricky as they're teams people expect us to beat.

"We saw at the Euros that there's talent in their team and they'll come with a desire to beat us so myself and the whole team need to be on the ball on Tuesday to make sure we get the right result."